History

Doyen of Assamese Films

Assam and its sister states namely Meghalya, Tripura, Mizoram, Manipur, Arunachal Pradesh & Nagaland jointly called 7 sisters once upon a time constituted only one state and were known as Assam only. Like every other state and great diversity of cultures in India, Assam and its sister states have preserved their unique culture. One reason for this is lesser contact with rest of the country due to nature of terrain and Central government’s apathy for years. Despite being very rich in resources, the area has not seen the prosperity due to it. The most important ingredients for an area to… Read More »Doyen of Assamese Films

Professor Yasmin Saikia

One day a program on Ahoms-the kings who ruled the state of Assam for almost 700 years-was telecast on Doordarshan TV. It talked about how Tai Ahoms came to Assam from Yunnan province and settled here bewitched by the natural beauty of the land. I have been to the place and stayed there for 3 years and I can vouch for the fact. Although they ruled the state for such a long period, adopted the language of the region, married into the local inhabitants, the truth about the history is not all that clear. I searched on Google and the… Read More »Professor Yasmin Saikia

Marathi literary festival in Ghuman Punjab

88th Marathi Literary Festival was celebrated in 2015 thousand mile away from Maharashtra in a non descript village called Ghuman in Gurdaspur district of Punjab. Looks surprising why? The reason is that this village has an important link with Maharashtra. Great saint Namdeo came here during his wanderings and remained here for 18 years. He is said to have born in Naras-Vamani village of Satara district in Maharashtra, Bhagat Namdeo. It was during 12 to 13 century but there are doubts. Anyway it was before the founder of Sikh religion Guru Nanak was born. Imagine about 800 years ago how… Read More »Marathi literary festival in Ghuman Punjab

Antoine Laurent Lavoisier: Father of Modern Chemistry

Antoine Lavoisier, son of a wealthy lawyer,  was a social climber, tax collector and widely held to be the founder of modern chemistry. He was born in 1743 and was put to guillotine in 1794 on the charges of selling the adulterated tobacco which was a luxury and was very costly. It came from colonies in South America established by Europeans and employed black people as captives. He discovered oxygen gas and named it so. Joseph Priestly, English scientist had also discovered this gas but named it “dephlogisticated air“. Both knew that the gas was closely associated with combustion in… Read More »Antoine Laurent Lavoisier: Father of Modern Chemistry

Bitter Side of Einstein’s Life

The family life of one of the greatest scientists was far from being happy. He married Mileva Maric in 1903 and divorced her in 1919. In the intial phase of married life, Einstein was happy but after sometimes quarrels began and they splitted though the couple has three children. In a letter to her, found recently, Einstein accuses her of not passing his letters to his children. He arrived at this conclusion from the fact that children did not return him any greetings as they were unaware of his letters. There were also quarrels over the money he sent for… Read More »Bitter Side of Einstein’s Life

Harappa Culture

In the early part of 3rd millennium, three great civilizations developed nearly simultaneously on Nile, Euphrates & Indus rivers. We know a great deal about the first two because they have left us written records in the form of papyrus scrolls or long engravings on stones. People of Indus valley, on the other hand, hardly left any written records except few inscriptions on the seals. So knowledge about Indus valley civilization is incomplete and subject to continuous updation. Archaeologists call this civilization Harappa culture after the modern name of the place in Punjab located on the left bank of river… Read More »Harappa Culture

Viramamunivar alias Father Costanzio Beschi: Great Tamil Poet

Perhaps the greatest literary figure in Later Tamil poetry was Viramamunivar (1680-1747). Actually it was the pen name of Father Costanzio Beschi, an Italian Jesuits who taught for 36 years in Tamil country. Like many early Christian missionaries, he lived in wholly Indian fashion and attained a complete mastery over the Tamil language and literary conventions. It is doubtful if any European before or since has gained so profound a knowledge of an Indian language. Beschi’s long poem “Tembavani” tells the stories from the Old and New Testaments in ornately beautiful Tamil. His style and the treatment of his themes… Read More »Viramamunivar alias Father Costanzio Beschi: Great Tamil Poet

Koh-I-Noor: A diamond with troubled history

Koh-I-NoorSize: 105.602 carats (21.1204 g)Colour: Finest whiteCut: CushionDiscovered: Date unknown in India The name means” Mountain of light” in Persian language. Once known as the largest diamond in the world. It is believed to have originated in Andhra together with its double called”Darya-ye-Noor” meaning “Sea of light”. It was originally owned by Kakatiya Dynasty which installed it in a temple as the EYE of the goddess. It has had a troubled history having been stolen, confiscated or taken over as war loot by various invaders. Presently it is a part of the Crown of Queen Elizabeth having been confiscated from… Read More »Koh-I-Noor: A diamond with troubled history

Chandragupta Maurya

When Alexander the great entered Indian subcontinent he crossed Hindu Kush occupied Kabul  and reached Indus and crossed it, it was 326 BCE. The land of India thus attracted outsiders since times immemorial. Omphis, the king of Taxila had already submitted without much resistance. Beyond Jhelum river was the land ruled by warlike king of Punjab, Porus. Alexander was with great difficulty able to defeat Porus in a surprise attack. Porus was captured  and brought before his conqueror. Porus was said to be very tall and handsome man. At the time he was brought before Alexander, he had nine wounds… Read More »Chandragupta Maurya

Tai Ahoms: The Easterly Kshatriyas

Indian subcontinent can be accessed on land and by sea from three sides. In the past, invaders entered it through West from the side of Afghanistan. It is protected from North by Himalayas which act as a formidable wall. The mountains which cover the India from North West to North East have been responsible for keeping the invaders entering from the North directly. lt is also responsible for creating the weather particularly the Monsoon which gives India respite from sweltering heat and helps in meeting the irrigation requirements and bestow bounteous crops to the region. Its snow capped mountains feed… Read More »Tai Ahoms: The Easterly Kshatriyas